Anyone tried Balea brushes?

Discussion in 'Shaving Brushes' started by DE_Dude, Sep 9, 2010.

  1. While in Croatia this summer I picked up a cheap brush (about $10 US) at a drugstore, DM. I couldn't read the description on the box, but according to my SWMBO who took a few years of German, it's a badger. The included stand was a nice bonus!

    It's my second brush, and my first and only badger. The handle has a smooth, triangular (not round) shape--easy to grip. It's definitely easier to make a creamy lather with this one than with my Van Der Hagen boar. Even though this one wins with the bowl, though, I like to face lather more and I usually end up scrubbing away with the VDH instead.

    Anyone else have any experience with this brush?
     
  2. beginish

    beginish Moderator

    I haven't seen one of these before, but the handle looks very interesting. How big is the knot?
     
  3. It's a supermarket brush for a few euros. Can't be that good. And the plastic handle is very light.
     
  4. I have one that I've been using for the last couple months. Balea is one of the house brands for "dm" drug stores in Germany (and I guess Croatia).

    I bought it for about EUR6 (with stand) as my first brush to tide me over until I get my new Shavemac brush for my birthday in October (can't wait!). Initially I hated the brush. I found it prickly and it seemed to aggravate my skin. After a while, though, it's softened up reasonably well and it's acceptable for daily use.

    It's not very dense, so I find it doesn't hold or build lather particularly well. But it's acceptable, but forget face lathering. I also lose at least one hair per shave, which is fine for now, but clearly not in the long run.

    Once I get my Shavemac it'll be "lights out" for this guy, but it may be a decent (cheap) travel brush.
     
  5. I use the same brush when I shave at the gym (at home I use an EJ pure badger). I think I paid about 200 Czech crowns (8 Euro) for it. As Silverstar says, it's a cheap drugstore brush, but it gets the job done. I quite like the handle.

    My experiences have been pretty much the opposite of Xman74's - I find the brush builds and holds lather well for both soaps and creams, and I only face-lather. It went through a period where it shed hairs like an old sheepdog, but I started putting more effort into drying it before packing it and now it's not as bad - like Xman74's brush it usually loses at least one hair per shave.

    When I have some extra cash I'll probably invest in another brush for the gym and travel (I'm considering the Omega 10005, or maybe I'll just get DM competitor Rossmann's 8 Euro equivalent). But for now, my Balea brush is serving me very well.
     
  6. beginish

    beginish Moderator

    For those that have tried them, could this be the European equivalent to the Shea Moisture or VDH brushes we can find on the shelves here in the states? How might it compare to another entry level badger like Tweezerman?
     
  7. I got one! My very first brush, for a price of $7-8 it's nice for a start. I think the hair is pure badger and I can get very good lather even with soaps and creams and I found it better for face lathering than bowl lathering. Knot is about 20mm and loft about 50mm.

    But I haven't used it since I get Rooney Super Silvertip 3/1:thumbup:
     
  8. Pinsel is german for brush. The knot shape and size are very similar to Muhle's entry level badger and Muhle does provide knots and brushes to others.

    On another note, I just noticed this morning Balea shave cream, asb and moisturizer at my local Shopper's Drug Mart. I'll have to go take a closer look at them.
     
  9. Glad you asked...I was wondering that myself!

    Thanks for the thoughts so far, guys. I bought the brush before joining B&B (in other words, before being able to really research what I was buying) and was wondering why no one said anything about it...now I don't feel like so much of an outcast anymore for owning one. :laugh:

    Here's the top view of that handle.
     
  10. I take back my earlier post about the failings of this brush. I've been face latering the last few days and I've found the brush really does a nice job. I imagine it doesn't stack up against much higher priced brushes, but it's a very respectable place to start.
     

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